‘Death of Albine’ is a collaborative film project between award-winning film director Mike Sharpe and British Installation Artist Rebecca Louise Law, inspired by elements of the French novel ‘The Sinful Priest’, by Emile Zola.
The novel centers on a love affair between a young priest, Serge Moure, and an innocent girl, Albine. The pair repeatedly meets in the beautiful gardens of a dilapidated stately home to consummate their relationship. Serge becomes wracked with guilt at his unwitting sins and is plunged into a deep religious fervor until he eventually leaves Albine to return to his faith.
Albine is left bewildered and suicidal at the loss of her soulmate and finally decides to tear the flowers from the garden to make a deathbed within which she lies down and dies. Our film is loosely based on these closing moments of the novel, as Albine prepares herself for death.
The novel has been a source of inspiration for filmmakers, musicians and artists for over a century. In 1970, it was adapted as the film ‘The Demise of Father Mouret’ by director Georges Franju. It was the inspiration for the opera ‘Paradou’ by composer Gerhard Wimberger, in 1985. It was also the subject of late British pre-Raphaelite painter John Collier’s painting ‘The Death of Albine’, which forms the title of our film.
About the artist
Rebecca Louise Law is a British Installation Artist, best known for artworks created with natural materials, namely flora. The physicality and sensuality of her work plays with the relationship between humanity and nature. Law is passionate about natural change and preservation, allowing her work to evolve as nature takes its course and offering an alternative concept of beauty.
A note from the artist:
"This book was given to me at the start of my art practice in 2002 and was an inspiration into how far you can use flowers within the creative arts. In this case, Zola uses flowers to describe human emotion and physicality through words.
I have used the extremities of Zola's writing as an inspiration throughout my art practice. The relationship between the human being and nature is at the core of my work and to capture an essence of this is what drives me forward. I have been wanting to make a snap shot of this scene since art school, so it's incredibly exciting to finally bring this to life."
About the director
Mike Sharpe is an award-winning director that specialises in visual storytelling with a strong eye for design and visual effects.
In 2008, he formed ‘Found’, a film and motion design studio, to bring together his dual passion of filmmaking and 3D animation.
Through the studio, Mike has directed music videos for international artists such as Ellie Goulding & Take That as well as a diverse range of groundbreaking content and commercials for a variety of global brands such as Microsoft, Fujitsu, PlayStation, Peugeot, BBC, and Peroni.
In 2017, his debut short film, ‘The Dog and The Elephant’, won the ‘British Short Film Award’ as the 31st Leeds International Film Festival and was shortlisted for ‘British/Irish Short Film of the Year’ at the London Critics’ Circle Film Awards.
A note from the director:
"When Becca first approached me to make this film, I jumped at the chance as her work is so incredibly powerful. Both as a director and as a studio, we are always looking to stretch the limits of visual storytelling and strive to make striking images that resonate with audiences.
Historically our work has been quite technically driven. I wanted to show people that we can also produce films that are more textural and delicate in tone.”
Death of Albine – Credit List
Directed by: Mike Sharpe
Starring: Olivia Lumley
Original artwork by: Rebecca Louise Law
Producer: Sean Stuart
Cinematographer: Tony C. Miller
Editor: Chris McKay
Music & Sound Design: Echoic Audio
Orchestrated & conducted by: Andrew Morgan
Production Manager: Melissa Massey
Production Assistant: Darren Blackwood
1st AD: Sean Stuart
2nd AD: Daniel Stuart
Steadicam: Simon Wood
1st AC: Jeff Vine
2nd AC: Nick Crew
DIT: Nick Allsop
Gaffer: Danny Haywood
Electrician: Lee Brinkley
Electrician: Jovan Lawrence
Hair/MUA: Vickie Ellis
Photographer: Charles Emmerson
Cast : Olivia Lumley
Artist: Rebecca Louise-Law
Artist Team: Kim Ross, Olivia Deane, Philip Norman, Simon Rees & Aden Stanners
Location Catering: Andrew Law & Youssou Diagne
Producers: Ian Walker & Felix Jude West
Editor Cut + Run (London): Chris McKay
Flower VFX: Rory McLean
Particle FX and Clean Up: Ryan Locke & Sam Humphries
Music & Sound Design: Echoic Audio
Grade Producer (MPC): Thomas Cole
Colourist (MPC): George K
John & Susanna Lumley
Richard and Christine Todd
The Bristol Ensemble